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Kbfx 0.5 Menu Proposal

Our team's commitment is to provide a professional menu for KDE4 that is different, modern, efficient, easy to use and blindingly fast. We will deliver a menu that also gives quick control over the most common apps and is totally customizable and extensible.

While we take some elements that are rather well-known (for example - the button as a means to launch the menu), we do not try to imitate an existing menu. As we think that long mouse ways are rather impractical, we do our menu in a manner, that there's no branching out in submenus, but they are placed in the same column as the elements, as a flat, indexed menu. However, we do support submenus, but in a different manner.


KBFX 0.4.9.x is developing towards the targets we try to achieve.
However, some things can't be done on the current structure of the program. Thus, we're already moving forward, trying to get the information needed to implement it for Plasma in KDE 4.0.

 KBFX 0.5 Vision: An Application and Utility Menu for KDE 4

There's still a long way to go for KDE 4.0, so we will use the time to further refine our idea. As a first step, we have agreed on following ideas:

  • We are still committed to deliver the best menu
  • Unlike the current release, we will implement the next major release totally conformant to KDE 4.0 and Plasma standards.
    • That means, it will be possible to use the color scheme for KBFX
    • We will work in having the presentation layer separate from the content
    • Configuration should be done with the means of Plasma configuration
  • As we are still committed to bring colors and art to the desktop, theming capabilities by providing pictures will still exist.
  • To ease the possibility of creating new menu elements, we will work with plugins.
  • As the enterprise desktop is becoming more and more important, we will implement our menu with the enterprise needs in mind.

We will still provide the 2column construct, as implemented in KBFX 0.4.9.x. However, we want to further improve it and make it more flexible by this means:

  • The first column will take plugins to display e.g.
    • The menu categories
    • The installed volumes / usb-sticks / cameras or a button that displays it in the 2nd column
    • The button to open the buddies list in the 2nd column
    • A button to display RSS feeds in the 2nd column
    • Further own or 3rd party plugins
    • Preferred applications
    • Last used / most used applications
    • Search results
  • The second column will display the elements delivered by the active plugin in the 1st column
  • Subcategories are grouped at the top of the 2nd column. A click on one of them empties the elements list and fills it with the elements of the respective subcategory
  • A right click on an element will move the following elements down and insert smaller bars for calling the methods that are delivered to the element and element container, e.g.
    • Add a new element to the category
    • Remove the element of the category
    • Edit the properties of the element, e.g. Display Name, Description, Icon etc...
  • The 2 columns will have their Scroll Arrows ‚??Up‚?? and ‚??Down‚?? at their respective top / bottom
  • The user can define, whether the menu size is increased, if more elements exist than can be displayed
    • Resize until full height of the Desktop
    • Resize until xxx (user definition) Elements are displayed
    • Don't resize at all, just use scroll

However, we want to make the menu more flexible, by e.g.
  • Enhancing the capabilities of the find box (beagle like?)
  • Making the find box more intuitive (search button and run button, so a user can define whether he wants to have the string interpreted as command, or as search criteria)
  • Giving the user the possibility to add ‚??in-menu-panels‚?? to place icons on it for quick-start
  • Providing the possibility, to hook further plugins on it
  • Providing the possibility to resize the column widths and the button seizes for categories and Elements
  • Providing the possibility to ‚??stick‚?? the menu, so that it will only close after the start button is pressed another time.
  • Providing the possibility to define for each of the category elements, whether their contents are displayed as buttons like before, or as a tree in the right column

We will implement it with following philosophy still in mind:
  • The shorter the mouse way, the quicker the access
  • Reduce need for mouse clicks
  • Make it in a way, that anyone can give it a look that he likes.

Last Updated: Sunday, October 19 2008 @ 10:29 PM EEST|Hits: 43,604 View Printable Version

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